Monday, June 06, 2016

10 weeks - Out and About

Puppyhood is all about socialization, and we have been doing a lot of that over the past few weeks. The most important socialization window is before 12 weeks of age, so typically by the time you get your new puppy you only have a few short weeks to work with (4 or less). If you are getting your puppy from a great breeder, as I did with Kili and Kenna, then some socialization has already started prior to her arriving home.

Sleeping at her first agility trial at 9 weeks
It is important that puppies get exposed early to as many things as possible, so that even novel things/situations that pop up in future (because you can't expose your puppy to absolutely EVERYTHING) will not seem so novel.

Playing with Kili at my Ultimate Frisbee game at 10 weeks
This means exposing puppies to lots of people, especially men and children, other dogs, other animals, loud noises, different weather, traffic, crowds, etc.

Ice cream social with our greyhound adoption group at 11 weeks
Fortunately, being in dog sports and being summer is working to Kenna's advantage in a way that we didn't have with Kili. I socialized Kili to as much as I could, but there were definite challenges because she was a winter puppy. Kili was also my first performance dog, so she didn't get to go to trials and shows as a puppy the way Kenna is experiencing. Kili turned out absolutely fine, but I am hoping that Kenna is reaping some additional benefits of going to agility trials, disc trials, dog shows, and SuperDogs.

First UpDog competition!

Kenna also attended her first large trial. Every June there is a big CKC trial held in conjunction with a conformation, obedience, and rally competition. We attended last year and loved it, so this year I took Kenna so she could experience the crowd and noise.

As you can see, Kenna was very stressed by the busy show.
Our set up
Kenna also attended puppy class. She was quite a bit younger than the other puppies, as we missed the first two classes prior to my picking her up at 8 weeks old, and also most of the other pups started at 12 weeks old. Little Kenna won the game of "musical chairs" on graduation day.

And here she is playing with a little friend:

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